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1820 - 1899 (5 Av 5659) AZRIEL HILDESHEIMER (Germany)

Rabbi, educator, and leader of Orthodox Jewry. Hildesheimer was one of the few Orthodox rabbis to have both a secular and religious education. After studying Semitics, philosophy, and history he received his doctorate in 1846 from the University of Halle. He served as a Rabbi in Eisenstadt where he was criticized for establishing a school which also taught secular subjects. Though a strong opponent of the Reform movement, Hildesheimer tried to find common ground between the Reform and Orthodox movements in Hungary but eventually gave up in frustration. Moving to Berlin he became Rabbi of congregation Adass Jisroel and founded the first rabbinical seminary in Germany where he implemented the philosophies of his friend, Samson Rafael Hirsch. Hildesheimer was an active supporter of Jewish life in Eretz Israel and helped improve educational standards there as well as establishing an orphanage in 1879. He was the author of numerous responsa as well as a new edition of Halachot Gedolot, a halachic code belonging to the Geonic period.

1820 GRODNO (Poland)

Ritual murder libel was provoked by the Jesuits.


The Jewish population of the United States rose from 10,000 to 250,000. (From 1830-1870 mostly German Jews arrived.)

1820 March 4, ALEXANDER I (Russia)

Prohibited the employment of Christian servants by Jews.

1820 March 9, SPAIN

A royal decree officially abolished the Spanish Inquisition, though in reality it was actually only brought to an end on July 15, 1834.

1821 April, ATTACK ON ACRE

By the brothers of Hayyim Farhi. Farhi had been murdered by Abdullah Pasha the Ottoman governor. Farhi's brothers Salomon, Raphael, and Moise, received permission from the grand mufti Sheikh ur-Islam to punish Abdullah . They conquered most of the Galilee, and laid siege to Acre for 14 months without success. After one of the brothers Salomon was poisoned by Abdullah, they gave up and returned to Damascus.

1821 December 24, - 1891 LEON (YEHUDA) PINSKER (Russia)

Renowned physician and early Zionist. Pinsker's conduct during the cholera epidemic of 1848 earned him respect and admiration. His ideas on Zionism were set out in his pamphlet "Auto-Emancipation" (see 1887), which was the first textbook analysis of Modern Zionism. Pinsker believed in the purchasing of land and immigration of Jews as a first step in solving the problem of anti-Semitism.


When some protested that it would mean that a Jew can hang a Christian, he was reported to reply "a mighty poor sort of Christian would require hanging."

1822 - 1866 ALEXANDER SALMON (England-Tahiti)

While on a trip to the South Seas, he met and fell in love with the beautiful 20 year old princess of the Teva clan, Marau Taaroa. Although according to law it was illegal to marry a foreigner, Queen Pomare IV (Aimata), by royal decree, made a three day exception, during which time Salmon and the princess were married. Their daughter Joanna, was the last queen of the Island and their son Tati befriended Robert Louis Stevenson. Salmon became a spokesman for the islanders. Marau Taaroa's memoirs were edited by Henry Adams, in 1901.

1822 - 1886 JACOB SAPHIR (Vilna -Jerusalem)

Scholar, linguist, traveler, fundraiser and author. Saphir who wrote Hebrew and Arabic fluently, was also familiar with Latin. He served as an emissary of the Perushim community of Jerusalem raising funds for the building of the Hurvah synagogue. He was one of the first to see and realize the importance of the Cairo Geneizah. Saphir traveled to Yemen where he spent a long time researching and documenting the Jewish community, before traveling to India, Australia and Ceylon. He described his travels in Even Sapir (“Sapphire”) also published as Sefer Maasah Teiman (“Travels to Yemen”). His Iggeret Teman sheinit (“The second Epistle to Yemen”) was instrumental in stopping the career of the false messiah and con man Judah ben Shalom.

1823 AFFAIR OF THE HATS (Tunisia)

The local bey (ruler) ordered all Jews, whether locals or foreigners, to wear a three corner cap. Despite the protests of European countries, the order was only rescinded seven years later when a new bey (Ahmad) came to power


Owed more than 21% of its public debt to Jews.


One of the most noted mathematicians of his day, especially in the field of algebra.

1823 - 1897 SABATO MORAIS (Italy-USA)

Hazzan, rabbi and reformist. He broke with the Pittsburgh Platform (see 1885) and formed his own more traditional branch of Judaism. He was a professor of Bible at Maimonides College in Philadelphia and one of the founders of the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York.

1823 CZAR ALEXANDER I (Russia)

Banned Jews from leasing farming lands and even living in small villages. Alexander, afraid the Jews would have undo influence on local peasants, decided to force them to move to larger cities where it would be easier to keep an eye on them.

1823 - 1892 ERNEST RENAN (France)

French philosopher, historian and Semitic Philologist. Some have considered him the "Father of anti-Semitic anthropology" for his description of Jews as selfish exploiters trying to entrap "honest Christians", and his belief that the Semites were " an incomplete race. " . This being said he did not belief that Jewish people constitute a biological racial entity.


Aka "Reb Edele". The daughter of Rav Shlomo of Belz she was considered her father's favorite. He supposedly lamented that if she had been born a boy she would have been his first choice to continue his dynasty. She was very knowledgeable and took on some of the roles of a Rebbe for her father including accepting kvitilekh (a written request for divine intervention or a blessing) and other typical male-only roles. She married R' Isaac Rubin and had six children all of her boys became rabbis and the girls married into rabbinic families. Some claim that she later became "possessed" and was exorcized by her brother R' Joshua, but remained depressed and solitary the rest of her life.


The Jew was published by S. H. Jackson. His aim was to try to combat Christian missionaries. The first Anglo-Jewish monthly, The Occident, was later established (1843) by the Rabbi, educator and writer Isaac Leeser.


The society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, S.P.C.A., was founded by Louis Gompertz.

1824 - 1904 KALONYMUS ZE'EV WISSOTZKY (Russia)

Merchant and philanthropist. Wissotzky was one of the earliest supporters of the Zionist movement. He established a successful tea house which still bears his name. Upon his death, he left his share of the business (one million Rubles) to charity, part of which went to found the Technion in Haifa.

1824 - 1883 SIR GEORGE JESSEL (England)

First Jew to become a judge in England. His greatest contribution was in English equity law.

1824 DAVID D’BETH HILLEL (Lithuania- Eretz Israel- India)

A Jewish scholar, set out on a voyage, to discover and report on unknown Jewish communities of the East and the “Lost Tribes of Israel.” He left Safed where he had settled with followers of the Vilna Gaon around 1815. His book was entitled Travels from Jerusalem through Arabia, Kurdistan, Part of Persia and India to Madras 1824–32. He traveled though Syria, Kurdistan, Persia and India, studying the socio- economics, geography, and languages of Jews in far flung communities. He died on a second voyage to India in 1846.

1824 - 1898 (19 Sivan 5658) SAMUEL MOHILEVER (Russia)

talmudic scholar and one of the leading Orthodox rabbis of Eastern Europe. A graduate from the famous Volozhin Yeshiva, he was conversant in math, engineering, and a number of languages. Mohilever encouraged Baron Edmond de Rothschild to support the resettling of Russian families in Eretz Israel and was a mediator between the settlers and Rothschild in various disagreements which arose. He was the founder of Mizrachi, a religious Zionist organization, and one of the founders of the Hovevei Zion (Lovers of Zion, 1881).


Bene Israel (Sons of Israel) was established at the home of Morris Moses and under the leadership of Joseph Jonas (the first permanent Jewish settler in Ohio). Like other congregationss of its kind in the newly settled territories, they waited until there was a quota of ten men and a Sefer Torah had arrived.


Alexander I, after an initial period of liberalism, reverted to the anti-Jewish position of his predecessors. He began with forbidding Jews to have Christian servants and culminated just before his death with banishing all Jews from larger villages in the Mohilev and Vitbesk districts.

1825 - 1864 FERDINAND LASSALLE (Germany)

Builder of the German Labor movement and Social Democracy. He rejected Marx in favor of reform and universal suffrage, fighting for the right of all to vote. Those who were against his new ideas called Lassalle "The terrible Jew". He was killed in a duel over a woman.


Educator and women's activist. In 1865, she helped organize the First Conference of German Women, at which they established the General Association of German Women (Allgemeiner Deutscher Frauenverein). In 1871, she founded The Association for Family and Popular Education (Verein für Familien- und Volkserziehung). The Association established educational facilities for women from preschool up to the Leipzig College for Women.

1825 - 1855 REIGN OF CZAR NICHOLAS I, BROTHER OF ALEXANDER (1796-1889) (Russia)

Made nervous by liberal developments in neighboring countries, he isolated Russia and banned Western ideas and liberalism. Half of the twelve thousand anti-Jewish laws passed between 1649-1881 originated during his reign. As an officer Nicholas had written in his diary that the Jews were "leeches who attach themselves to the populace and suck its blood."

1825 January 13, RUSSIA

Prior to his death, Alexander I expelled all the Jews from Mohilev and Vitebsk.

1825 January 16, REFORMED SOCIETY OF ISRAELITES (Charleston, South Carolina, USA)

Was founded by forty seven members of the Kahal Kodesh Beth Elohim synagogue after their petition to institute "reform" was rejected. This marked the beginning of Reform Judaism in North America. The movement received further support with the immigration of German Jews, including reform leaders, to the United States after the revolution of 1848 The Charleston community was one of the largest and wealthiest in North America at that time.


Led a parade in New York City declaring Grand Island a Jewish city. The 2500 acre Island was bought by Samuel Legget. It was part of Noah's colonization dream to provide a refuge for his Jewish brethren. He was to call his city Ararat. Few people took him up on his dream and the plan soon disintegrated.


Was executed together with his brother Ezra, after a libel was brought against them. Gabbai aka Baghdadli, was a important banker serving as the personal banker to Sultan Mahmud II. He played a pivotal role in helping suppress a rebellion against the sultan which earned him many enemies. Gabbai used his office many times to help the Baghdad Jewish community. His grandson Ezekiel Gabbai (1825-1898) became the first Jew to serve in the Ottoman Ministry of Education and later became president of the Supreme Criminal court.

1826 March 6, KAISER FRANCIS II (Austria)

In reaction to the immigration of Jews to Eretz Israel, the Austro-Hungarian Kaiser (and last holy Roman Emperor ) passed a law forbidding secret immigration or the removal of funds from the empire.

1826 July 26, LAST KNOWN AUTO DA FE (Valencia, Spain)

A poor school master was executed for adhering to Judaism. The Auto da Fe ceremony, accompanied by vitriolic sermons, had served to announce the punishments of those who were deemed guilty by the Inquisition of "backsliding". Often, but not always, those deemed guilty were burned at the stake (quemadero). It is estimated that approximately 30,000 people lost their lives, with hundreds of thousand receiving lesser punishments during the almost 350 years that the Inquisition was in existence.

1826 August 20, POPE LEO XII

Prohibited Jews from leaving the Rome ghetto without a written permit from the Criminal Tribunal. Jews meeting Christians while outside the ghetto were forbidden from speaking to them in a "familiar way".He also rebuilt the ghetto in Ancona, which had been demolished by Napoleon.

1826 December 16, COURT CHANCELLERY DECREES (Austria)

Based on a decree by Emperor Franz II in 1805, all candidates wishing to become district rabbis would first need to complete a German primary school of three grades.

1827 ABOLITION OF THE MORE JUDAICO (the Jewish oath) (France)

France becomes one of the first countries (after Holland in 1818) to abolish the oath. The More Judaico was the oath that a Jew had to take when bringing a gentile to court. This degrading oath had been in existence since Emperor Justinian (see 615) and was used throughout most of Europe.

1827 - 1900 MENDEL DINESS (Mendenhall) (Odessa- Jerusalem –Washington)

The first Jewish photographer of Jerusalem. Diness had been sent by his father to study in Jerusalem after he began to show interest in the haskalah movement. He became a watchmaker but soon fell under the influence of a local Christian missionary and converted. He was introduced to James Graham a photographer who taught him the trade and with whom he made many photographs. Diness moved to the USA where he changed his name to Mendenhall where his plates lay in obscurity until 1989.


The assessor of "Holy See", denied a request by cardinal Cesarei Leoni archbishop of Jesi ( Ancona Italy), to allow Christians work in Jewish houses on the Shabbat. He confirmed the ruling of The Third Lateran Council (1179) and Gregory IX (1233) prohibiting Jews from employing Christians .

1827 September 7, CANTONIST EDICT OF NICHOLAS I (Russia)

Czar Nicholas I proclaimed his Statute of Conscription and Military Service which allowed Jewish youths between 12 and 18 to be forcibly conscripted into the army and forced to serve for 25 years. Although drafting of 18 year old's for 25 years or service had been in effect since the 17th century, this statute made military service compulsory. A quota was placed on the Jewish community. Often children were simply kidnapped, which was usually done via an agent called a "Khapper" (grabber in Yiddish), who often disregarded the official minimum age of 12 and took children as young as 8 in order to fill their quota. One of Nicholas' goals was to estrange as many children as possible from the Jewish religion, and he encouraged them to change their names and accept baptism. Approximately 70,000 Jewish soldiers converted to Christianity during the 19th century.

1828 - 1848 JULIUS FERDINAND COHN (Germany)

Botanist and father of bacteriology. He proved the existence of chlorophyll and was the first to define the nature of bacteria. Cohn invented a method of filtering water which was instrumental in halting the cholera epidemic of 1852. In Breslau he was denied a doctorate because he refused to convert, but eventually he received one in Berlin.

1828 - 1903 NAHUM SALOMON (Coventry, England)

Inventor, first manufacturer of bicycles, and the man who introduced the sewing machine to England. He also helped to develop the saccharin industry.

1829 ISAAC JOST (Germany) (1793-1860)

Published the first history of the Jews by a Jew since Josephus, preceding Graetz by almost 50 years. As an educator and histographer, his approach was purely rationalistic, based on modern research and reflected his position of support for the Reform movement. Jost began his history with the Maccabees and ended in the nineteenth century.

1829 - 1888 LAURENCE OLIPHANT (South Africa-Britain- Land of Israel)

Author, diplomat British intelligence agent, and Christian Zionist. He proposed that Britain support Jewish settlement in Eretz-Israel (See 1878). He met with the sultan (1880) but was not successful in gaining his support. He was more successful in his meeting (1882) with the Sadigura Rebbe Abraham (Avrohom Yaakov) Friedman and Rabbi Samuel Mohilever. Oliphant and his wife Alice settled in Haifa and briefly in Daliat el- Carmel. Naftali Herz Imber, the author of the Israeli national anthem, Hatikva, was his secretary and lived with them. Oliphant is considered a key figure in the founding of Rosh Pinna and Zichron Ya'akov.

1829 October 14, - 1884 EDWARD LASKER (Germany)

One of the first German Jews to enter politics. A defender of his people, he introduced the law which gave the Orthodox the right to establish their own school system.

1829 November 16, - 1894 ANTON RUBINSTEIN (Russia)

Renowned Russian pianist and composer. He was a rival of Liszt and a pupil of Chopin. Rubinstein founded the Russian Music Society and became the first head of the St. Petersberg Conservatory. His works included ten symphonies, among them the Ocean Symphony and over 100 vocal pieces containing such operas such as The Demon (1871), The Maccabees (1875), Nero (1879), Sulamith (1883) and Moses (1887). Even today, he is considered one of the greatest pianists of all times.

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